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For first time ever, scientists find an asteroid with rings
For first time ever, scientists find an asteroid with rings

For first time ever, scientists find an asteroid with rings

Astronomers have discovered the first asteroid with rings, orbiting between Saturn and Uranus.

Named Chariklo, the asteroid has two dense, narrow rings and is now the fifth known ringed world in our solar system, along with Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune, NBC News reported.

The set of rings circling the asteroid named Chariklo was formed soon after a collision that scattered the remains around the asteroid, according to a new study. The rings also suggest the presence of undiscovered moon around Chariklo that helps them in keeping stable, says researchers.

Astronomers employed seven telescopes most of them located in South America in the search, but only the European Southern Observatory’s La Silla telescope in Chile could expose the set of rings orbiting around Chariklo.

“We wer”They would be two spectacular sharp and really bright rings, crossing all the sky. They would be noticeably close, as they are at about 1/1,000 of the moon’s distance from us” said Braga-Ribas, regarding the surface of the asteroid.

Researchers believe that the rings are similar to the rings of the Saturn as both are bright, dense and are probably formed by water ice and rock. Chariklo asteroids rings differ from Saturn rings in their scales.

Chariklo belongs to Centaurs – a class of space objects, which have characteristics and irregular orbits that resemble both asteroids and comets. These remote objects are a challenge to study because of their tiny size. Astronomers could only able to spot the rings around Chariklo when the light from a distant star were blocked when Chariklo travelled between that star and Earth on June 2013, reported.

“Chariklo may not be the only nonplanetary body to have rings. Rings may be a much more common property than we thought,” he said.


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